Why is everything charity-based these days?

Refreshing this post from a couple years ago, where I suggested: If we ALL take care of our own family, friends and neighbors – we would hardly ever need or see a “charity” cause begging for your money.

But it seems that the “charity train” is gaining speed, and picking up millions of unsuspecting passengers along the way.

Charity overload in Hoboken NJ

(Slick van, fancy t-shirts and the word "kids" gets a lot of customers!)

Charities are very curious “causes”

They’re interesting and troubling at the same time because they play into your emotions and are next to immune to being challenged. I mean “how dare you not help these victims!”

Such a slippery slope to be on, too. Because “God Forbid” you don’t want to (or can’t) help some sad, desperate person, cause, event “in need.” Because you might be looked down upon for your (lack of) good will.

Whether it’s “Haiti” or “starving children in third world countries,” or “Battered Women” or whatever – the list of the latest and greatest group of people “in need” of something grows by the second.

But what is “in need?”

Think of it this way. Unless you are the “kingpin,” or “top dog,” or “head honcho” in this world – there will always be someone better off than you. Or your group. Or your city.

We all suffer at some point. In fact, we all die, too. I refer to one of my favorite website’s tag line (ZeroHedge): “On a long enough time line, the survival rate for everyone is ZERO.”

It seems as if these charities are “quick fixes” to getting whatever bad situation they claim to help – back to normality.

I mean we have people suffering in this country coast to coast. With something called debt – which the diabolical “system” has knowingly propagated. No one helps those people. Nah.

Charity overload strollathon

(This charity also is an opportunity for stroller moms to show off their thousand-dollar wheels to other moms...)

Charities are odd entities – with amazing success rates

If you just think for a few seconds, and realize that most charities are (at best) mismanaged to the point where very little money actually reaches the “sad victims” they promote to get your money.

And (at worst) the rest of these charities are scams – intended to trick your susceptible self into donating something which is basically a bonafide racket to make some people rich behind the scenes. Or you might get influenced by your favorite faux-celebrity to donate and tap into that “feel good” type manipulation.

Helping without recognition – have you ever tried it?

Now being a good person doesn’t require you to cut a check to some unknown entity. It starts right in your own environment. There are plenty of people who could use some help – but would never want to ask for it. They just deal with whatever their problems are. See, those are the people I love helping when I see an opportunity.

Whether it’s someone struggling with a bag, or is lost and needs directions – to a neighbor, friend or relative that might be sick and could use a little pick me up or moral support.

With social media connecting every second and every move people make – I truly wonder how many people do anything “charity” related these days without broadcasting it to the world. I bet that number is a low single digit percentage.

Can you move in Hoboken with a charity getting in the way?

10/25/2012 Update:

One trend I’ve noticed surging rapidly is CHARITY BASED EVENTS.

Seems like every event, gathering, social meetup is a fundraiser for some large charity organization - especially 5K runs now. We have like 20 5k runs a year here in Hoboken and not one is just plain running!

Beware of charities!

OK, before you think I’m some insensitive person who wants the world to suffer, understand that there is a difference between real charity and these bloated mega-charities. And I also understand that many people have been affected by certain diseases (cancer, MS, and more), and may have lost a loved one. Often times they become attached to the charity “in the name of” the one the lost. It sounds nice on paper, but I just don’t think the monies raised do more than make the person feel good about trying to make a change – rather than actually implementing real change.

Big charities are probably gaining steam these days because of the tax loopholes in them. As you might have recently read about how Wyclef Jean’s Yele Haiti charity collapsed amid scandal.

Even in Hoboken – everything is now a fundraiser. WTF? Especially that Hoboken Charter School fire. They had insurance – why so many fundraisers?

There is so much overhead, waste and greed as the charities get bigger and more frequent – that they often lose scope of what it means to be charitable. It’s been said that places like the American Cancer Society are such bloated organizations, that only pennies per dollar donated go to actual “research,” and that’s even stretching it.

Everywhere I go, someone wants you to donate. Pets, kids, environment, old people, foreign people, birds, and more.

If every person in this country treated family, friends and neighbors as their sole charities they helped – I think the entire country would be better off. However, “community” isn’t what it used to be now that everyone is spread out, constantly traveling or immersed in self to notice what is right in front of their eyes.